Depression, also referred to as Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), can affect anyone — even a celebrity. Although celebrities are sometimes viewed as heroes and role models, they are susceptible to depression just like anyone else. You don’t have to be a celebrity to seek depression treatment, and there are a myriad of treatment options available to you.
Let’s take a look at 15 celebrities who have dealt with depression, and some of the ways that these celebrities have found hope and managed their symptoms.
1. Katy Perry
Pop star Katy Perry opened up about her battle with depression during a 96-hour YouTube livestream. Perry said she coped with “situational depression” when her album “Witness” fell short of many critics’ and fans’ expectations. She also dealt with suicidal thoughts, and ultimately wrote the song “By the Grace of God” during her bout with depression.
Perry found hope in divinity and “a greater, higher power” during her battle with depression, she told Vogue Australia. She discovered “a new foundation” that set the stage for her future music endeavors.
2. Jon Hamm
Actor Jon Hamm, aka Don Draper from the TV show “Mad Men,” experienced depression symptoms after his father died when he was in college. He told InStyle in 2017 that he used therapy to cope with his depression symptoms, and he still attended therapy at the time of the interview. Hamm also told InStyle that he’s a “self-declared optimist and ‘believer in the human spirit.'”
Hamm found hope in therapy, which helped him cope with depression, grief, and alcohol addiction. He is open about his use of therapy to manage mental illness. Hamm has also been a leading advocate for defeating the ongoing stigma surrounding mental illness.
3. Lady Gaga
Pop star and actress Lady Gaga has experienced depression and anxiety throughout her entire life. She told Billboard magazine in 2015 that she was taking medication for depression. Additionally, Lady Gaga said she is committed to showing disenfranchised teens that they are “not alone.”
Lady Gaga found hope in her music, which she has used to overcome anxiety and pain, she told How to Cope. She has also discovered hope in therapy, which she uses to address her feelings related to self-blame, shame, and damage.
4. Michael Phelps
Michael Phelps, an Olympic swimmer with 28 medals to his name, first coped with depression in 2004. Phelps admitted to CNN that he took drugs to self-medicate and “fix whatever it was that I was trying to run from.” Phelps hit an “all-time low,” he said, after the 2012 Summer Olympics. At that point, he sought help and began to discuss his feelings with others.
Phelps has found hope for a brighter future with stress management. He has implemented stress management into programs offered by the Michael Phelps Foundation, and also collaborates with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America to help change the stigma surrounding mental health issues.
5. Kristen Bell
Actress Kristen Bell, perhaps best known for her roles in the movie “Frozen” and on the TV show “The Good Place,” shared her struggles with depression and anxiety in an essay for Time‘s Motto. In her essay, Bell went public about her battles with depression and anxiety, and she helped reduce the stigma commonly associated with these mental health disorders. Bell pointed out that there was “no logical reason” to feel the way she did.
Bell found hope in her mom. She thanked her mom in her Motto essay for helping her gain the strength to seek out help with her depression and anxiety, and encourages others to explore treatment options for depression and anxiety.
6. Bruce Springsteen
Even musician Bruce Springsteen, aka “The Boss,” has experienced bouts of depression. He opened up about his depression experiences in an interview with Esquire last year, noting that he suffered two emotional breakdowns: one at age 32 and one during his 60s. Springsteen said he was never hospitalized during either his emotional breakdowns, but admitted that he should have been.
Springsteen found hope in medication to manage his depression. He said he uses a variety of medications to help manage his depression symptoms, and these medications help keep him “on an even keel,” he told Esquire.
7. Gwyneth Paltrow
“Ironman” actress Gwyneth Paltrow said she experienced postpartum depression following the birth of her second child, Moses.
Paltrow told Good Housekeeping that she found hope and started to recover from her postpartum depression once she accepted her feelings. She also used therapy and exercise to cope with her postpartum depression.
8. Ashley Judd
Actress Ashley Judd, who has appeared in more than 20 movies, discussed her lifelong bout with mental health issues during a program for students at East Tennessee State University (ETSU) in 2016. According to the Bristol Herald Courier, Judd told ETSU students, “I am Ashley Judd, and I am recovering from depression, and I have no shame.”
Judd found hope in writing about her mental health experiences. She has also hosted programs to educate people on mental health across the United States.
9. Ryan Phillipe
Actor Ryan Phillipe began dealing with depression during childhood. Phillipe told Elle magazine that his depression symptoms have gotten better over time, but admitted that he is “innately kind of a sad person.”
Phillipe has found hope in meditation and exercise. He told Good Housekeeping in 2017 that he has used meditation and exercise to help manage his depression symptoms.
10. J.K. Rowling
J.K. Rowling, author of the “Harry Potter” book series, admitted that she felt depressed when she wrote the novels. In a commencement speech at Harvard University, Rowling called depression “the most unpleasant thing” she has ever experienced.
Rowling found hope in writing. She was able to use her depression in a creative way; she said her severe depression symptoms helped inspire the hooded monsters, the Dementors, in the “Harry Potter” series.
11. Sheryl Crow
Singer and songwriter Sheryl Crow is a breast cancer and brain tumor survivor, but she dealt with depression before she ever faced either of these health problems. Crow told The Telegraph that she has experienced periods of deep depression during her lifetime.
Crow found hope in playing the piano. She said she played piano at a young age so she could “feel something,” and it helped her manage her depression symptoms.
12. Terry Bradshaw
Terry Bradshaw, an NFL Hall of Famer and football broadcaster, said he copes with clinical depression. Bradshaw told the Chicago Tribune in 2003 that he was first diagnosed and treated for depression in the 1990’s, but he had previously dealt with depression for years prior to that.
Bradshaw found hope in the use of antidepressant medication to help manage his depression symptoms, as well as teaching others about depression. He has promoted the antidepressant medication Paxil in the past and helped raise awareness about depression.
13. Buzz Aldrin
Astronaut Buzz Aldrin gained notoriety for being one of the first people to walk on the moon, but his fame actually contributed to his bout with depression. Aldrin told The New York Times that his mother and maternal grandfather dealt with depression.
Aldrin found hope by seeking help for his depression. Eventually, Aldrin became chairman of the National Mental Health Association, and he continues to work to destigmatize depression.
14. Wayne Brady
Comedian Wayne Brady knows what it takes to make people smile, but he hid his depression symptoms for many years. Brady opened up about his battle with depression to Entertainment Tonight in 2014; he admitted that depression made him feel like he did not “want to move.”
Brady found hope in helping others coping with depression, and he has encouraged people dealing with depression to open up about their feelings. He said he believes that people coping with depression can determine why they feel the way they do, then figure out the best way to manage their depression symptoms.
15. Jim Carrey
Actor Jim Carrey has dealt with depression and used antidepressants to treat his depression symptoms. Carrey told 60 Minutes that his approach to life involves being in the moment.
Carrey found hope once he stopped taking antidepressants. He said he does not take alcohol or drugs, and he instead gains strength from the spiritual side of life.
If you are dealing with depression, it is critical to speak with your doctor to develop a depression treatment plan that is right for you. Achieve TMS offers a revolutionary transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) therapy program for severe depression symptoms.
TMS therapy from Achieve TMS is a drug-free depression treatment that involves the use of magnetic pulses to stimulate neurons in the brain responsible for mood. It is designed for depression patients who have tried multiple antidepressants without accomplishing their desired results, or want a non-invasive treatment for managing depression without the intolerable side effects of drugs. To learn more or to schedule a TMS therapy consultation with Achieve TMS, please contact us online, or call or text us today at 877-909-4363.